I don’t know about you, but the pain is, well, a pain. Living with Gastroparesis, anxiety, and depression, physical pain is something that comes with the territory. With all three of these conditions, pain can manifest in different ways – anything from standard abdominal pain to I can’t move because I’m having a panic attack out of nowhere.
Over the years I have developed some coping tricks to manage the pain while waiting for a treatment to kick in, or just to get through a particularly hard day. Here are six of them.
- Start the day with my bullet journal. With my mind going 100 miles a second with random thoughts, my journal allows me to focus on the most important things that have to get done for the day. One thing that I do every night before I pass out for the day is to set up the next day’s agenda (doctor appointments, meetings, work shifts, and other tasks and routines). If I wake up in a lot of pain I know I can open up my journal to see what all I have to get done and it really makes me feel better when I am able to check off everything as they are completed. Once the day is completely checked off, I know that I can call it a day and go back to my bed and sleep the pain away.
- Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to get ready. Waking up rushed does not help anyone or anything, especially when you have anxiety. When I have to rush I feel worse than when I give myself an extra hour to get ready, and then forget something important at home, like my Arthritis Strength BC Powder. Along with my journal. it also mentally prepares me for the day ahead of me and take things slow.
- Go for a walk. Before or after work. To be clear, I don’t mean go for a 5 or 10-mile walk. I mean go for as little as 5 or 10 minutes or just walk around the block if you are able to. When I am able to, I will go for a walk right after I wake up and take Leo (my dog) with me. I work from home, which means I need to remind myself to take a break to stretch or go outside for a few minutes. Regardless, how and at what intensity moving helps keep joints and muscles working, and afterward I typically feel much better.
- Epsom salt bath soak. This will work wonders on the body. I usually will put two to four cups into hot water and sit in the bath for 30 minutes, while listening to an audiobook, before bed. This helps to relax all of the muscles in the body and helps me to wind down to go to sleep. Plus my pain goes away for about an hour afterward.
- Sleep. What helps me most when I am in pain is when I am sleeping. The bad thing is if you leave me alone I can sleep for 12 plus hours. One thing I have noticed is that no matter how much sleep I get I am always tired. The more tired I am, the higher my pain and the less I am able to handle in a day before breaking down. So when I am able to I make sure to give my body as much rest as possible.
- Over the counter pain medication. BC Powder is my BFF! I also have to take Meloxicam for Arthritis in my back, but back in December, I have developed Sciatica which is causing a lot of pain in my left leg and because of that the only thing that helps is taking an arthritis strength BC Powder along with the Meloxicam. I don’t know about you, but when I’m in pain there can be times when I am almost willing to do anything to get rid of it.
Do you have to deal with pain while working? Leave a comment below to share your tips on how you cope with pain.